Tag Archives: Growth

11th Sunday of the Year: Growth happens when we start small. Catholic Inspiration

Gardeners know that fruitful plants begin from tiny seeds that grow slowly and steadily through a process of change.  God brings about transformation in a similar way in our souls: we start small, work a process of growth and the Lord gives the grace we need.

Mass Readings – 11th Sunday of the Year

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11th Sunday of the Year: Growth and change in the Kingdom of God

Study:  Recall a time of profound change and growth in your life.  What helped you become better?

Pray:  Ask the Lord for the grace to face difficult challenges and embrace them.

Serve:  Who in your life is confronting change right now?  How can you help them?

Mass Readings – 11th Sunday of the Year

First, let’s take a quick summary of the key themes in the readings this week:

  • 1st Reading – The Lord plants a tree in Israel
  • Psalm – “Lord, it is good to give thanks to you.”
  • 2nd Reading – We aspire to please God, whether at home or far away
  • Gospel – Jesus offers the parable of the mustard seed

Now that June is in full swing the color green is flourishing across the upper Midwest.  Summer delights the eye with growth and life, and from my view along the shore of Lake Superior this is most evident in the beauty of trees.

I have walked Wisconsin forests my entire life, and I find a peace and serenity among the grandeur and power of trees.  They anchor the soil, provide habitat for wildlife, shade for the weary, and a renewable resource for humanity’s handiwork.

Yet for the majesty of trees, they all start small – from a pine cone or an acorn, a “helicopter” seed or a shoot – massive trees have humble, tender beginnings.

Just like our faith.

We know from our own experience that all good things take time and effort to develop; growth and change occur through new encounters.  The process reminds us of two key points:

  • We have daily opportunities to grow.  Every day provides new ways for us to develop the gifts and talents God has given.
  • We are works in progress.  While we might lament that we are not where we want to be, we can face the challenges before us with the grace of Christ

In the first point we recognize opportunity and growth; in the second point we face obstacles with hope that these challenges will teach us new insights.  Growth and change are part of life.  What’s more, this change almost always begins from a small and humble beginning.

Where in your life do you have opportunities to grow?  Where do you see challenges that will require new ways of thought and action?  Take time to seek the Lord – to start small like a little seed – and grow in these moments into a new creation, guided and empowered to become more fully alive.

Now matter where we are in the journey of faith, may we open our hearts to God’s grace as we grow in faith, hope, and love as disciples of Jesus Christ!

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


3rd Sunday of the Year: The power of the resurrection. Catholic Inspiration

One of the hallmarks of the Early Church was the transformation that took place in the hearts of the disciples.  Standing before the Risen Lord, they were freed from the fear of sin and death as they opened their hearts to the power of repentance.  Their example inspires us to call upon God for the grace we need every day to walk in the light His love.

Mass Readings – 3rd Sunday of Easter

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Daily Mass: Boldness and Belief. Catholic Inspiration

As the disciples moved from doubt to bold belief, we see the process that often accompanies our transformation in faith.  We need time to understand, integrate and apply God’s grace to our lives; may this Easter season help us to proclaim the Good News with boldness!

Mass Readings – Saturday of the Octave of Easter

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Daily Mass: We are all works in progress. Catholic Inspiration

All living things grow slowly and steadily, following a process as they mature.  The same is true for our faith.  On this feast of Saints Titus and Timothy may we patiently and faithfully keep our eyes fixed on the Lord as we grow in faith, hope and love.

Mass Readings – Sts. Titus & Timothy

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Daily Mass: It all starts with a seed. Catholic Inspiration

The parable of the sower teaches us that the Lord works in a slow and steady way to change our lives.  While there are many temptations and distractions that can choke off our faith, we are reminded to foster the Gospel in our hearts and keep our eyes fixed on Jesus.

Mass Readings – Wednesday of the 3rd Week of the Year (St. Francis de Sales)

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Daily Mass: Starting small. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – Tuesday of the 30th Week of the Year

Like a mustard seed and some yeast, the Kingdom of God grows and transforms into something entirely new.  What’s more, this process happens as we offer our lives…following the example of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts